Couch to 5K
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Femur stress fracture?

After I finished my very first 25 minute run back in week 6 I started to notice a dull pain in my upper right thigh. At first I didn't thnk anything of it, just soreness from running that much for the first time and being a heavier weight (5'4 160 pounds). It wouldnt hurt when I walked or stood around. I have a front desk job at a hotel where I stand for 8 hours a day behind a desk and it never bothered me then, until I started back on the treadmill. During week 7 I had no problems running the 25 minutes straight, except at the very beginning I noticed my leg would hurt but I'd usually just run it out and wouldnt hurt after the first 3-5 minutes of my run. So I never thought anything of it really until the other day I started on Week 8 Day 2. The 5 minute walk in the beginning I noticed it hurt a little more than usual, then I started running. I was mostly limping than running, I probably looked goofy as hell on the treadmill. I ended up quitting after trying to run it out for 5 minutes and the pain took a while to go away. I came home, googled the symptoms and found that runners have had something called a stress fracture in their femur. Apparently they also believed it was just soreness and thought nothing of it, ran anyway and ended up on crutches and unable to run for 3-6 months or longer.

My question issssss... has anyone had this happen to them before? After i realized this is a definite possibility that I have a small fracture in my femur and shouldn't run until it heals, which could take weeks or months, I just about cried from disappointment. One week left to graduate and I'm too worried to keep going in fear of really damaging something.

I would go to the doctor's office but I have no insurance so this is a complete self diagnosis. Thanks :D

4 Replies

Can't offer any experience other than my own, which is a different area of pain, but my doctor has advised against running for a while, so maybe a break will help. When you get back into it though maybe try a podcast from an earlier week just to give your leg abit of an easier start back into it? Also maybe ask around here for certain stretches or a better warm up/warm down? Wishing you all the best!


MirrorSaw I gather you are not a UK citizen, so have to pay for your treatment if you are uninsured?

As with any stress fracture you must completely rest the limb concerned until it is healed. if you run, you will do the damage that you read about. Do you have any Public Hospitals near you to get this checked out? it does sound very much like femur stress fracture, but you can have referred pain from the hip. Treatment would be the same though-no running. Once you have recovered the advice you have been given by meggyann is the best we can off you.

Good luck

And keep Resting....

Colette xx


I can't help thinking it's huge leap to going from soreness to a stress fracture. Whilst it could be, the lesser options are maybe more likely; but I don't think you can self diagnose these things unfortunately.

But definitely worth just stopping up for a week giving it some rest, stretching and tlc, if you know someone who can do a bit of massage that's always nice (sometimes it even helps :-) )

Then try a gentle loosener to see if you can get back into it, maybe on grass for a softer landing? We've chosen a high impact sport so we all get stuff from time-to-time both my knees are sore right now.

It may be what you suspect but only a physician can help with that but that would be damnably unlucky.


Hi, i have also started to have this problem, also while doing a couch25k program, i think i first noticed the pain around week 6, i tried ignoring it and running through it, but it just got worse, so i decided to stop running until the pain went away.

I work as a postie so do lots of walking and never had any issues of pain, and i used to run in the past, probably 3 years have past since i used to run often and without any issue like this, so i have been very confused as to what is going on.

Anyway it took about 9 days until the pain stopped, so i carried on with the couch25k program, and rejoined in the final week 9, i ran 2 x 5k, one of them being the graduation run, after that the pain came back again, i tried to run again 2 days later at my first Parkrun, but the pain became too much and i had to walk, limp the rest of the way.

Again i waited until the pain stopped, this time i waited about 2 weeks, then i joined the follow on group, i felt good and ended up running about 9k, i could feel a tinny bit of pain during the run, the next day it was very sore again.

So another 2 weeks without running, then again after running about 10k the pain is back again, with all the walking i do everyday this is very annoying, as i would of thought my legs would be in good condition


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